Which Tea Has The Most Caffeine? Caffeine Content Of Teas & Health Benefits

A common tea question is, which tea has the most caffeine? This article provides a detailed answer to this question.

Some people are looking to increase their caffeine intake and others are trying to quit or get a balance in-between.

Tea does not contain as much caffeine as coffee does after brewing. But, in the tea world, some are high up there in caffeine content, and some and down the range.

The caffeine content in teas depends on factors such as the type of tea plant, the growing conditions, processing and production, and the brewing techniques.

Here’s a list of different types of tea and their caffeine content.

What is caffeine?

Caffeine is a natural chemical stimulant found in coffee, tea, cocoa, cola, guarana, energy drinks, and yerba mate.

It stimulates the brain and nervous system by increasing the circulation of cortisol and adrenaline in the body. This triggers alertness and energy rush, enhancing focus and reducing fatigue.

Caffeine is quickly absorbed into the bloodstream. It works by binding to adenosine receptors without activating them. This blocks the effect of adenosine, reducing tiredness and keeping you awake and alert.

It also increases blood adrenaline levels, which in turn increases brain activity of dopamine and norepinephrine neurotransmitters. These compounds are also responsible for increased alertness, arousal, and focus.

Best definition of tea

Tea is an aromatic beverage made by steeping tea leaves, roots, or seeds in boiling water. Teas can be classified according to region, size of processed leaves, and the manufacturing process.

Classification based on the manufacturing process is the most common. It classifies tea as fermented (black tea), unfermented (green tea), and semi-fermented (oolong or pouchong).

Black tea is the most common type and is obtained from Assam or hybrid plants. Green tea is obtained from the China plant which is common to regions in China, Japan, Indonesia, and Malaysia.

Oolong or Pouchong tea is produced from a special variety of the China plant which is found in regions in Southern China and Taiwan.

Teas is the second most consumed liquid across the world, after water of course. Depending on the type of tea and manufacturing process, tea could taste slightly bitter, sweet, nutty, bitter, or floral.

Which tea has the most caffeine?

Black tea has the most caffeine. It contains between 50 to 90 mg of caffeine per 8 fl. oz.

Black tea comes from the Camellia sinensis plant. It is a rich dark tea with a robust flavor because of its full oxidized leaves. Whole leaves are coarsely chopped into fine broken leaves and are steeped for long periods in boiling water.

There are different types of black tea. Some of them are Assam tea, English Breakfast, Earl Grey, and African Teas. The caffeine content in these teas varies but remains within the general range for black teas.

Other types of tea and their caffeine levels

Dark tea

Dark tea is often mistaken for black tea, but they are two different types of tea. Pu-erh is the most common variety of dark tea. It is an aged China tea that undergoes microbial fermentation for months to years. The leaves are fermented after being heated and shaped.

It has an earthy smell but a smooth floral flavor. Dark tea has the same 50 to 90 mg caffeine content as black tea. Some popular varieties are Vanilla Rose Dark Tea Hearts.

Oolong tea

Oolong tea is a partially oxidized tea served in Chinese cuisine. Its caffeine content is not as high as that of black tea, but it is strong as well. An 8-ounce cup contains 50 to 75 mg of caffeine. Oolong tea is lighter and sweeter than black tea with floral and fruity undertones.

Examples of oolong teas are Peaches n’ Cream Peach Oolong tea, Toasted Nut Brûlée Caramel Nut Tea, and Currant Conversation Best Black Currant tea.

Green tea

Green tea has a lower caffeine content than black, dark, and oolong teas. It comes from the Sam’s plant as the black tea, but it is not oxidized.

This tea contains 24 to 45 mg of caffeine per 8-ounce cup. Green tea is a perfect choice for coffee drinkers who keep their limit between 100 to 200 mg of caffeine.

Furthermore, the leaves are made to be brewed at low temperatures and for a shorter time. This also gives it a more subtle flavor than black and dark teas.

Examples of green tea are Citrus Mint Jade Citrus Mint Green tea, Hope Blend green tea, and Earl Grey green tea.

White tea

White tea is an unoxidized tea with 15 to 20 mg of caffeine per 8-ounce cup. It is a light-yellow tea with fruity and floral aromas.

It is lighter than black tea and gives you a calming caffeine boost. Examples of this tea are lavender mango white tea, white pear tea, and white champagne tea.

Health benefits of tea with caffeine

Teas are loaded with antioxidants

Antioxidants are good for the body. They help to remove free radicals and prevent cell damage, thereby reducing the risk of several life-threatening illnesses like cancer and liver disease.

Polyphenols are a class of antioxidants found in tea. They also help to improve overall health.

Control blood sugar

By controlling blood sugar levels, the caffeine in tea can help prevent and control diabetes. The antioxidants help to process blood sugar better and keep it under control. This also helps to reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases, obesity, and kidney failure.

Good for the heart

This benefit is also a result of the antioxidants present in tea. Flavonoids can help reduce the risk of high blood pressure, cholesterol levels, triglyceride levels, and obesity. This helps to prevent and manage cardiovascular disease.

Boost immunity

This is traceable to the presence of antioxidants in teas. They help to protect cells and tissues from free radical damage which breaks down immune defence and exposes the body to illnesses.

Weight control and management

Teas are low-calorie beverages, which is good for weight management. Some teas contain a flavonoid called catechin which boosts metabolism and helps the body break down fat quickly.

Also, by raising energy levels, caffeine encourages the body to burn calories and lose weight.

Side effects of teas with caffeine

The side effects of teas with caffeine are seen when you go beyond the recommended daily caffeine consumption (400 mg). You can exceed this limit with 4-8 cups of tea, depending on the type of tea.

Common symptoms of overconsumption of caffeinated tea are:

  • Headache
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Insomnia
  • Nausea
  • Fatigue
  • Dizziness
  • Heartburn
  • Digestive issues
  • Increased anxiety, stress, and restless
  • Reduced iron absorption
  • Frequent urination
  • Pregnancy complications
  • Dependence and addiction


Do caffeinated teas give you energy?

Yes, teas with caffeine can provide an energy boost. Depending on the type of tea and brewing method, you can get the same energy boost

Is the caffeine in tea different from the caffeine in coffee?

Coffee beans have more caffeine than tea leaves. For an equal amount, raw coffee beans contain 1.1-2.2%, while tea leaves contain 3.5% caffeine. Also, the caffeine in tea is released more slowly than the caffeine in coffee.

Does iced tea have more caffeine than hot tea?

Cold teas have half the amount of caffeine in their hot counterparts. Cold brewing reduces caffeine content and removes a lot of antioxidants. They are refreshing but may not give you all the alertness a cup of hot caffeine tea would.

Are decaffeinated teas the same as caffeine-free teas?

Decaffeinated (decaf) teas are different from caffeine-free teas. Caffeine-free teas never had any caffeine right from production.

On the other hand, decaf refers to tea that has gone through the process of decaffeination to remove most of the caffeine. In simpler words, caffeine-free teas have zero caffeine, while decaf teas contain trace amounts of caffeine.  


Not all teas are made and brewed equally. They vary in caffeine content with black tea topping the list. So, if you need a cup of tea that will give you the same jolt as a cup of coffee, it should be black, green, or oolong tea.

If you’re not in for caffeine but want something soothing, try an herbal tea like chamomile or lavender. But if you are all up for aroma and something luxurious, it has to be Jasmine.

Find what suits your needs and drink in moderation. Teas may not have as much caffeine as coffee, but there could be negative effects when you consume too much tea.

On the flip side, if you feel caffeine doesn’t affect you after more than one cup of tea, here are reasons why.

Thanks for reading